Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Chasing Dreams Texture Tutorial!

Colleen of Chasing Dreams is a dear blogging friend of mine and I can't tell you how thrilled I was when she sent this amazing texture tutorial my way to share with you.  She also sent a special coupon code for my readers.  Just pick your texture set(s) of choice from her blog and enter the coupon code COFFEE25 at checkout for 25% of your entire order!!!   I really love the new Mishmosh set.  Colleen's textures are really beautiful, so please go check them out.  This special offer expires on 10/22/2011.

Colleen has a really clever trick she uses to paint out texture on parts of the image that I have never come across before.  I love when I learn new things!

So, now on to Colleen's tutorial.


I am Colleen, wife, and stay at home mom for almost 29 years to six children. I started photography a few years ago hoping to take better pictures of my children when I realized that I truly loved being behind the camera. The more photography workshops that I took the more I hungered for more. About 1 1/2 years ago I discovered my love affair with photoshop. After playing around with brushes and colors I realized how fun and therapeutic it was to create textures. I just released my 10th set of textures and feel truly blessed and humbled by the success of my little business. The best part of starting up Chasing Dreams Photography has been the wonderful friendships that I have made over time.

In this tutorial I will be using textures from my new Chasing Dreams collection "Mishmosh". There are many different methods to apply textures. I use several myself. In this picture I will take you through steps that I used to process an image taken on Amalfi Coast. I wanted to not only use the actual texture but erase the unwanted areas of texture while stealing some of it's color.

I placed the texture(County Fair) on top of my image by going under the file tab...clicking on place and then clicking on the texture that I want to use.

Once my texture is placed on top I play around with the mode to get a feel for the colors. In this case I liked the texture on the overlay mode. I lowered the opacity just to see how the texture will look once finished. This allows me see where the colors of the texture hit on the image.

Once the texture is in place I rasterize the layer by right clicking on the layer and then clicking on rasterize.

Now we are going to remove texture from areas where we don't want it but want color. I change the mode on my texture layer back to normal and make sure the opacity is at 100% again.

Grab the eyedropper tool.

Because I already played with the mode and opacity of the texture I have a pretty good idea where I want to add some color to my image and remove texture. Find within the texture a color that you want to use when removing texture. For instance, I know that I want to keep light in the center of my image therefore I sample the light colors in the middle of the texture until I find one I like.

Change the mode on your texture layer back to the overlay mode (or what ever mode you originally decided to use). Grab the paint brush tool. Change the opacity. I like to keep the opacity between 10-30%. I know that is a big range difference. I pick 30% if I want to remove almost all of the texture and 10% if I want to remove a little bit at a time.

Brush on the picture in the areas that you want to remove texture and add the color that you chose. I also use this method to contrast. For instance you can pick a deeper color in the texture to contrast any where within the picture.

I wanted to add another texture to this picture to give it a little punch.  Repeat the steps above. Making sure to rasterize the texture layer first.

Because I wanted to give the picture contrast and punch I settled on color burn mode. Once I found the color I wanted to use to erase the texture with...I grabbed my brush tool, lowered the opacity and started brushing away the texture but adding a deeper color for contrast. I do not brush over the entire picture, only areas where I want to remove the texture.

Once I was finished with my first two textures I played around with the opacity of both textures until I was satisfied. I ran an action for a little extra color.

I could of stopped here and the picture would of been just fine but I thought I would add a little sky to finish it off...

I brought in Dreamy Sky Grunge from my "Mishmosh" collection and placed it underneath the action. I stretched the texture and moved it around to where I wanted it placed.

I changed the mode of the sky layer to multiply.

Now it's time to remove the sky from the buildings (unless you want clouds on your building, just kidding) and other unwanted areas. First you will want to add a mask to the sky layer and then grab a soft black brush. Start out with the opacity at 100% to remove from the center of the picture (the buildings). Once you get close to the edges, in this case where the buildings meet the sky, lower the opacity of the brush tool (I lower it to10-15%), make the picture bigger so that you can focus in (I'm getting old I need the picture HUGE) on what your doing and make the brush smaller. The idea is to softly blend the sky in to the picture. You do not want to see white around the edges of where the sky meets the buildings. I hope that made sense.

Lower the opacity of the sky layer so that it looks natural. Sometimes my sky layer is only at 15% and other times a bit higher depending on the image and colors.

And there you have it....one of many ways to process using textures.


  1. This is a great turorial, I love seeing how textures are applied by other photographers...Hadn't seen the eye dropper used before. Thank you! I look forward to snatching up these textures too :)

  2. I love how textures can improve a photograph without being so obviously texturized. great tutorial!

  3. Thank you for the the tutorial. I used textures before but never with eyedropper tool.
    By the way why do we need rasterize the texture? Whitout it we can't pick the color?
    Thank you

  4. Awesome! I love the Chasing Dreams textures, bought Mishmosh and I love it! Didn't know that you could play around with the texture this way so I'm excited to try it out. Thanks so much for the easy to understand tutorial! :)

  5. Thank you. I appreciate learning to use color with my brush when I remove texture.

  6. Thank you for all of your wonderful stuff, hard work and for giving it to us for free. Just getting started in digital art and the free stuff is very appreciated.

  7. Thank you for this tutorial!! Can you please explain the rasterizing? I'm not sure I understand that...

  8. Beautiful image! Your tutorial is great... so easy to understand :) Thank you!

  9. Thank you so much for sharing this very helpful tutorial. I'll be off now to purchase some textures!

    And thank you, Rita, for your amazing blog and unparalleled generosity.

  10. Very interesting. Don't use texture at all but this is inspiring me to do so. Thank you both for your generosity!

  11. Thank you for this wonderful tutorial. I am confused with having to rasterize the texture layer as well. What exactly does that accomplish? Thanks so much!!

  12. Wow, lovely work. I too have the same question about rasterizing: what does it do and why do you do it?

    Thanks for this tutorial, now off to check out the Chasing Dreams site.

  13. I loved this tutorial and learned something new about textures! Thank you so much for sharing!

  14. thanks for sharing such a great tutorial! i've used textures before in a different way...but I'll sure try your way!


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